One of the most memorable stories in Heidi Baker’s book, Compelled by Love, took place in London. I say ONE of the MOST memorable because the book is filled with amazing stories of faith and love and healing! But this story that I am about to relate…to use a phrase my college friend uses, rocked my face off!
Heidi is a passionate, loving soul. I haven’t met her, but when you read her words you hear her heart and you know. You feel amazing love from her. Her love for others led her to London at 17. Just saved a couple of years she found herself in London wanting to lead others to this wonderful Savior that as she says “ruined” her. That’s not a bad thing. I know what she means. When you have felt and experienced that amazing all-consuming passionate love from the Lover of your soul…you are ruined. Nothing else will ever measure up, no other love will take your breath away, and no human can compare.
In London she met a girl that was more like a man -strong and gruff, masculine and angry. She had been sexually abused and mistreated in a horrible homelife. She had run away but the past was still haunting her and taunting her. She would have none of Heidi’s love. She made that clear.
She also met a man, a drunk. He was hopeless and depressed. He didn’t want what Heidi was pushing. He was fine on his own, Jesus didn’t want him anyway. Reluctantly, Heidi realized that as much as she wanted to, she couldn’t drag them to forgiveness and grace and love…they had to make that choice. She prayed they would.
One night Heidi decided to try to talk to the girl one more time, but whatever she said or didn’t say set her off! They were in the stairwell of the apartment that they were living in and she hit her. Heidi said, “I love you.” She hit her again, and again through the pain Heidi said, “I love you.” Anger welled up and pain was unleashed and the girl was pummeling her, beating her with every lash of memory into her face. The whole time, through tears and confusion and severe pain, Heidi kept saying “I love you!” The man, drinking on his stoop, was privy to this whole scene. Awestruck he was unable to move as he watched her being beaten to death. Before it was too late, he yelled and frightened the girl off. He picked up Heidi, carried her to his apartment, and nursed her back to health. Her love for the girl was more than he could stand, and suddenly he understood that it wasn’t her love but Christ’s love in and through her! He wanted that Savior! He needed that Savior! And he found Him.
Heidi then says that weeks of recovery went by, and then one day there is a knock at the door, it is the girl. In her hands, she carried some flowers, and with tears she apologized and wanted to know more about this Jesus.
That is LOVE. All out love – that Paul talks about. He says in Romans 12:9-10 that our love for one another should be an all out love! Not holding back but giving all we have…the kind of love that the World cannot understand…the kind of love that is beyond comprehension or explanation…the kind of love that will allow someone to beat you to the point of death while you whisper, “I love you.” Irrational, crazy love…the kind of love that will take on the penalty for sins He never committed… that will allow Himself to be crucified on a cross a symbol of shame, reserved for the worst of criminals…that will speak through a deformed face as blood drips from His face, “Father forgive them.”
All out love.
That’s what He asks…that’s what it’s all about…that’s what we should be all about. Are you? Because I want to be, and I won’t stop until I am.